3.25.2024

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Good morning. It's Monday, March 25, and we're covering the aftermath of the deadly Moscow terror attack, a bond deadline in New York, and much more. First time reading? Sign up here.

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Need To Know
 

Moscow Attack Fallout

The death toll in a mass shooting at a popular concert venue outside Moscow rose to around 140 over the weekend, with more than 150 others wounded. It marks the country's deadliest terrorist attack in two decades, with rescue workers saying heavy fire damage continues to impede search efforts (see footage—warning, sensitive content).

 

The attack was quickly claimed by a group known as ISIS-K, short for ISIS-Khorasan Province (see overview), an offshoot of the broader jihadi organization. Operating out of parts of Afghanistan, Iran, and Turkmenistan, analysts say the group has targeted Russia for its treatment of Muslims inside the country and its involvement in Syria. 

 

The group was also responsible for dual January bombings in Iran, as well as the bombing of the Kabul airport during the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, which killed 13 American troops and close to 170 Afghans. 

 

As of this writing, four suspects have been charged with committing acts of terror. 

 

Trump Bond Deadline Arrives

Former President Donald Trump faces a deadline today to cover a $454M judgment handed down in a February New York civil fraud trial to avoid the potential seizure of assets by the state. Lawyers for Trump have argued the fine should be stayed while the full appeals process plays out. 

 

Legal experts say a number of scenarios may play out. The former president may secure enough cash, an intermediate appeals court may intervene to require the fine be stayed, or state Attorney General Letitia James may begin seizing some Trump Organization assets. James has not revealed any details of such a move, nor has she said even whether she would proceed immediately. Declaring bankruptcy may be a fourth option for Trump, analysts say. 

 

Trump, who indicated he would argue the case to the Supreme Court, said Friday he had almost $500M in cash—funds he said are meant in part to support his 2024 campaign. 

 

Shifa Assault in Gaza

Israeli officials said 170 militants were killed and nearly 500 others detained following a weeklong raid at Gaza City's al-Shifa hospital in the northern half of the territory. The operation has been described by the Israeli military as one of the most direct engagements with senior Hamas fighters since fighting began. 

 

Located in northern Gaza, the complex was the region's largest operating medical facility. Israeli officials accused senior commanders of both Hamas and the associated Palestinian Islamic Jihad militant group of attempting to regroup in the hospital. A February analysis by The New York Times suggested Hamas used the building for coverage and weapons storage and was accessible via underground tunnels (but fell short of confirming claims it was a "command and control" center).

 

During the current effort, Israeli officials said they also recovered at least $3M in US currency and Jordanian dinars, among additional weapons. Reports Friday suggested at least 3,000 civilians remained trapped in the facility.  

 

See updates on the broader war here.

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In The Know
 

Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

In partnership with Timeline

> The second round of the NCAA men's basketball tournament wraps; see Sweet 16 bracket (More) | The second round of the women's tournament continues today; see latest bracket (More)

> "Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire" hauls in $45M to lead domestic box office in its opening weekend (More)

> IRS investigating Los Angeles Dodgers' interpreter for Shohei Ohtani amid allegations he stole millions from Ohtani to cover gambling debt (More

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Science & Technology

> Flight startup Boom successfully carries out first live test of its supersonic aircraft; prototype is the first step in a planned supersonic commercial travel (More)

> Study suggests pregnancy accelerates biological age—the presence of genetic markers seen as bodies grow older—but the post-birth period may reverse many of the effects (More) | Biological age 101 (More)

> Engineers develop fingertip-sized device to detect toxic chemicals from pharmaceutical waste in water (More)

 

Business & Markets

> Markets close mixed Friday (Dow -0.8%, S&P 500 -0.1%, Nasdaq +0.2%); Dow drops more than 300 points Friday but still ends with best week since December (More) | FedEx shares jump 7.4% on better-than-expected quarterly profits (More)

> FBI notifies passengers of an Alaska Airlines flight aboard a Boeing 737 Max that lost a door-plug panel midflight they may be victims of a crime; news is the latest in a series of setbacks for the plane manufacturer (More)

> Dog longevity startup Loyal secures $45M in financing to continue development of age extension therapy for canines (More)

 

Politics & World Affairs

 > Russia continues attacks against Ukrainian energy infrastructure early Sunday, fires over 50 drones and missiles in Lviv and Kyiv; Poland claims missile briefly entered its airspace (More) | See war updates (More)

> At least 137 Nigerian students freed Sunday after 17 days in captivity to gangs seeking ransom; number is only half of original group of 280 reportedly kidnapped March 7 in country's northwest Kaduna state (More) | Simon Harris, 37, to become Ireland's youngest prime minister once current PM Leo Varadkar steps down next month (More) 

> Pope Francis does not deliver homily during Palm Sunday Mass amid respiratory challenges, a rare move to start off Holy Week (More) | What is Palm Sunday? (More)

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Etcetera
 

How to celebrate Holi, Hinduism's springtime festival of colors.

 

Mapping the average commute time in US states.

 

The coolest small cities to live in the US

 

Neolithic canoes discovered in Italian lake after 7,000 years

 

... and a 1,000-year-old ice skate unearthed in the Czech Republic.

 

Jasmin Paris becomes first woman to finish quirky Barkley Marathons.

 

The chemistry behind that sweet baby smell and sour teen stench

 

Paris waiters race returns after 13-year hiatus

 

Clickbait: How it (literally) pays to be assertive

 

Historybook: Journalist and civil rights activist Ida B. Wells-Barnett dies (1931); Singer Aretha Franklin born (1942); Sir Elton John born (1947); Race car driver Danica Patrick born (1982); Children's author Beverly Cleary dies (2021). 

"The rough side of the mountain that’s the easiest to climb; the smooth side doesn’t have anything for you to hang on to."

- Aretha Franklin

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